11-14-2019  12:33 am   •   PDX Weather    •   SEA weather  
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NORTHWEST NEWS

GOP Mailer to Oregon Voters Mimics US Census Form

The mailers are labeled "2019 Congressional District Census" and solicit donations to Trump's campaign. Voters are reminded that official U.S. Census Bureau surveys will never ask respondents for money.

Veterans Day: Honoring Those Who Serve and Continue to Serve

On this Veterans Day, the staff at The Skanner News honors all who have served and continue to serve in our nation's armed forces

FBI Reports Cybercrimes are Rising Because of Sophisticated Scams

Oregon man offers warning after he was scammed into giving away his family's life savings to criminals

Worker Who Yelled Racist Slurs at Black Customer Gets Jail

Audio and video showed a disturbing scene, said Deputy District Attorney Nicole Hermann

NEWS BRIEFS

Noose Found at Oregon Health & Science University

Surveillance cameras did not capture the area; investigator are reviewing who had access ...

DEQ Extends Air Quality Advisory Due to Stagnation

DEQ expects the air quality advisory to last until at least Tuesday, Nov. 12 ...

Forest Service Waives Fees in Honor of Veterans Day

The USDA Forest Service will waive fees at day-use recreation sites in Oregon and Washington on Monday, Nov. 11 in honor of Veterans...

Two Local Nonprofits Announced as Grant Recipients for Portland-Area Programs

Financial Beginnings Oregon and Portland Parks Foundation will receive a total of 0,000 plus leadership resources through Bank of...

State Seeks Volunteers to Rank Investments in Washington’s Outdoors

The Washington State Recreation and Conservation Office is recruiting 50 volunteers to evaluate grant proposals for parks, boating...

College Football Picks: Auburn at center of all down stretch

Over the next three weeks, Auburn will be in the middle of the action even though the Tigers are outside the playoff race.No. 13 Auburn plays two top-five playoff contenders in No. 5 Georgia (No. 4 CFP) and No. 4 Alabama (No. 5 CFP) at home in November, and depending upon how the Tigers do their...

No. 11 Florida looks for different outcome against Missouri

GAINESVILLE, Fla. (AP) — Florida linebacker David Reese insists things will be different against Missouri this week.He believes his team's preparation, focus, effort and intensity will change — along with the outcome. It's imperative if the Gators are going to make it to a New Year's...

OPINION

5 Ways Life Would be Better if it Were Always Daylight Saving Time

A Professor from the University of Washington says DST saves lives and energy and prevents crime ...

Importance of Educators of Color for Black and Brown Students

A new report examines the ways that school leaders of color’s experiences and perspectives influence how they build school culture ...

Atatiana Jefferson, Killed by Police Officer in Her Own Home

Atatiana Jefferson, a biology graduate who worked in the pharmaceutical industry and was contemplating becoming a doctor, lived a life of purpose that mattered ...

“Hell No!” That Is My Message to Those Who Would Divide Us 

Upon release from the South African jail, Nelson Mandela told UAW Local 600 members “It is you who have made the United States of America a superpower, a leader of the world" ...

AFRICAN AMERICANS IN THE NEWS

College Football Picks: Auburn at center of all down stretch

Over the next three weeks, Auburn will be in the middle of the action even though the Tigers are outside the playoff race.No. 13 Auburn plays two top-five playoff contenders in No. 5 Georgia (No. 4 CFP) and No. 4 Alabama (No. 5 CFP) at home in November, and depending upon how the Tigers do their...

No. 11 Florida looks for different outcome against Missouri

GAINESVILLE, Fla. (AP) — Florida linebacker David Reese insists things will be different against Missouri this week.He believes his team's preparation, focus, effort and intensity will change — along with the outcome. It's imperative if the Gators are going to make it to a New Year's...

Junkyard Dawgs: No. 5 Georgia's stellar D a team effort

ATHENS, Ga. (AP) — Kirby Smart has coached some stellar defenses.This might be one of his best.Never mind the lack of star power."They've got some of those same traits as the good defenses I've been able to be around," the Georgia coach said Monday. "But this group probably doesn't have that...

ENTERTAINMENT

Justices could return cable TV race bias suit to lower court

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Supreme Court seems likely to overturn a lower court ruling in favor of an African-American media mogul and comedian who’s suing cable giant Comcast for racial discrimination.The justices appeared to be in broad agreement Wednesday that an appeals court applied...

Review: Driver brings 6,700 pages to life in ‘The Report’

Of all the statistics involving the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence report on the CIA’s post-9/11 detention and interrogation program — better known as the “Torture Report” — let’s focus on this for a second: It had 38,000 footnotes.This mammoth...

Review: ‘The Good Liar’ pairs Mirren and McKellen

For a blind date, we could hardly do better than Helen Mirren and Ian McKellen.They are brought swiftly together by a computer dating service in the opening minutes of “The Good Liar.” Both click “widowed.” When they cautiously sit down in a quiet London restaurant, and...

U.S. & WORLD NEWS

Astros can make history if Bregman wins MVP

Alex Bregman will try to give the Houston Astros an unprecedented sweep.If the All-Star slugger is selected the...

China tests Mars lander in international cooperation push

HUAILAI, China (AP) — China invited observers to a successful test Thursday of its Mars lander as the...

Iraq’s protests raise question: Where does the oil money go?

BAGHDAD (AP) — Waves of violent protests have engulfed Baghdad and Iraq’s southern provinces, with...

Astros can make history if Bregman wins MVP

Alex Bregman will try to give the Houston Astros an unprecedented sweep.If the All-Star slugger is selected the...

China tests Mars lander in international cooperation push

HUAILAI, China (AP) — China invited observers to a successful test Thursday of its Mars lander as the...

Iraq’s protests raise question: Where does the oil money go?

BAGHDAD (AP) — Waves of violent protests have engulfed Baghdad and Iraq’s southern provinces, with...

McMenamins
Sophia Yan CNN Money

HONG KONG (CNNMoney) -- The number of Americans choosing to give up their citizenship has spiked dramatically this year as the government works to implement a new disclosure law aimed at stamping out tax evasion.

Some of the rush may be caused by Americans hoping to avoid the new disclosure requirements. Others living abroad say they are giving up their U.S. passport because they are tired of dealing with overly complicated tax filings.

Unlike most countries, the U.S. continues to tax citizens on all income, regardless of where it is earned or where they reside. For expats, filing taxes in two countries often means wrestling with a huge mountain of paperwork.

"Every year, I was spending about $600 to $700 having somebody do the tax paperwork," said Kim-Fredrik Schneider, who now resides in the U.K. and retains his Swedish passport.

Schneider, who hasn't lived in the U.S. for about 13 years, was one of about 1,809 people to renounce U.S. citizenship or give up their green cards in the first half of 2013. That's a sharp uptick from 2012, when government data showed only 932 renunciations over the entire year.

The increase comes as the U.S. prepares to implement the Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act, a new law that requires foreign institutions to report all assets owned by Americans.

The measure, approved by Congress in 2010, is aimed at recouping some of the hundreds of billions the government says it loses each year in unpaid taxes. The law also requires individuals with overseas assets to file additional forms.

Most people renouncing citizenship are "hardly the 'fat cat' tax exiles," said Eugene Chow of Hong Kong immigration firm Chow King & Associates.

Instead, Chow said, clients who choose to give up their citizenship are often "really very ordinary people" who find it difficult to comply with the ever-changing tax code.

Immigration lawyer Melissa Vincenty of Fragomen recalled one client, a woman nearing retirement age, who gave up her citizenship for the same reason.

She had been filing taxes as an expat for nearly four decades, and didn't want to deal with it anymore, Vincenty said.

While the paperwork is certainly a burden, concerns over wealth preservation can also be a contributing factor.

Eduardo Saverin, one of Facebook's four co-founders, is one of the wealthiest individuals to give up his passport, and has since taken up residency in Singapore.

Saverin officially expatriated from the U.S. last year, before Facebook's IPO. The Brazilian native insists he did not renounce his citizenship for tax reasons, but his move still drew criticism from high-profile lawmakers.

Even individuals who are not among the super rich are considering giving up their citizenship -- especially when lower tax rates beckon in other countries.

Americans are looking down the road at how their investments such as retirement funds will be taxed, Vincenty said.

Giving up your US citizenship, she said, is a "realistic option to be able to manage those tax burdens."

For those who haven't paid their taxes, giving up citizenship isn't an easy way out. The government can still go after former citizens if evidence of tax evasion surfaces.

Plus, there's no statute of limitations and the IRS could then collect back taxes, said Scott Michel, president of Caplin & Drysdale, an international tax law firm.

There is also a hefty exit tax applied for Americans who have assets over $2 million, he said. Even the heirs of people who have given up their passports could be responsible for taxes on inherited assets, if they remain U.S. citizens.

Chow, the Hong Kong lawyer, said this is by design.

"[The U.S.] wants to charge you for the privilege of leaving, so you won't have an incentive to get out," he said. "In their zeal to nail people with offshore accounts evading tax, they pass these rules that make life very, very difficult for ordinary people."

Taxes aside, bidding Uncle Sam farewell can be an emotional decision, Vincenty said. "Lots of people are torn about it."

Schneider framed the issue in more philosophical terms.

"Am I still American? Well, I certainly sound American; I know a heck of a lot about American culture," he said. "I haven't stopped being who I am just because I don't have a contract with the government."

 

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